Stolen vehicle triggers police chase, arrest

Washington County Sheriff's Patrol vehicles on scene where a suspected car thief was apprehended in LaVerkin, Utah on Feb. 20, 2016. | Photo by Don Gilman, St. George News
Washington County Sheriff deputies on scene where a suspected car thief was apprehended in LaVerkin, Utah, Feb. 20, 2016 | Photo by Don Gilman, St. George News

LAVERKIN – A stolen vehicle report led to a brief car chase and arrest in LaVerkin Saturday afternoon.

At approximately 3:20 p.m., LaVerkin City Police responded to a report of a stolen 2002 gold-colored Toyota Camry, according to a news release from the LaVerkin Police Department. Officers located the vehicle a short time later in the area of 200 S. State St. 

After the officer turned on his emergency lights and sirens, the suspect in the vehicle fled the scene but was located later in the parking lot of the LDS stake Center at 500 N. Main St.

“When the officer arrived there, she’d actually gotten out of her car and was hiding in some bushes by the Stake Center,” LaVerkin Police Chief Benjamin Lee said. “One of the bystanders who was there was courageous enough to point out where she had fled to and where she was hiding.”

When the responding officer attempted to arrest Pettegrew, she fought back, Lee said. Washington County Sheriff’s Office K-9 units arrived as backup and deployed the K-9, at which point the suspect complied with law enforcement officers and was taken into custody.

Natalie May Pettegrew, the suspect who was apprehended in LaVerkin on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. | Photo courtesy Washington County Sheriff's Office, St. George News
Natalie May Pettegrew was arrested for alleged vehicle theft and other charges in LaVerkin Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. | Booking photo courtesy of Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

The suspect was attempting to escape from the police at a high rate of speed, witness Aubree Thompson said.

“I saw her going like Mach 9 …,” she said, “she was seriously going so fast.” 

Due to the fact there was a physical altercation with officers, Pettegrew was initially taken by ambulance to the hospital for medical clearance before being charged, Lee said.

Pettegrew was booked in the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility and charged with trespassing, assault on a police officer, failure to stop at an officer’s command, reckless driving, evading and motor vehicle theft.

LaVerkin City Police Department, Hurricane Valley Fire and Rescue Department and Washington County Sheriff’s Office K-9 units responded to the incident.

Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

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Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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